I blogged a while ago about how I typically prefer singers of the national anthem to not put too much interpretation into it. But a couple of months ago, we visited the "official" flag exhibit at the National Museum of American History, which I've always loved. This time, though, I was struck by a little piece near the end of the exhibit that briefly discussed how different individuals and groups through the decades have brought new interpretations to the Star-Spangled Banner, and thus made it their own, much like America become the adopted nation of a variety of different races, ethnicities, religions, etc.
This sort of changed my mind a little about different renditions. I suppose musically I still prefer more "straight" versions of the anthem, but it makes me happy that others can bring into it the emotion and love they feel for our country. I think it is pretty fantastic that it can become familiar and comfortable and a true anthem for each individual. I'm grateful for that message. Now I just wish performers would do the fourth verse.
Or maybe this is just my way of admitting my secret love for David Archuleta.